Just my personal opinion, but I think there should be some sort of mandatory prerequisites when becoming a "Santa" at a local mall, business, park, etc. My list would include, but not be limited to:
-All Santas must obviously look like the man in the big red suit.
-All Santas must smile.
-All Santas must use kind words.
-All Santas must like children.
-All Santas must be healthy.
-All Santas must say "Ho, ho, ho".
I don't feel like this list is too much to ask, especially when most of Santa's cliental includes small children. Well, with the exception of big people like me.
Apparently though, a local mall, which will go unnamed, but happens to be off of a very busy road, doesn't have a list of prerequisites. Apparently, they just take what they can get and expect a lot of money for it. Taking what you can get often results in:
-Santa not looking like the man in the big red suit.
-Santa not smiling.
-Santa not using kind words or even being kind.
-Santa not particularly fond of children.
-Santa not healthy.
-Santa not saying much of anything, but especially no "Ho, ho, hos".
And when you take what you can get and then offer it up to others, including small children, it can then result into crying children and angry parents.
Travis has said since the start of the holiday season that we will not make Morgan Kate sit in Santa's lap or even go near him if she doesn't want to. He doesn't want her to be afraid of Santa in any form or fashion. I agree and we have both done a pretty good job of this. When we saw Santa Tuesday and then again on Wednesday, we let it be on Morgan Kate's terms. When we left it up to her it resulted in a happy child and even happier parents.
Last night was a little different.
We went to see Santa one last time at a local mall. We waited in line for just a few minutes and then it was our turn. Morgan Kate was standing beside me and I bent down and asked her if she wanted to see Santa. Santa replied, "Mom, don't ask, just do it". Ignoring Santa, which is something I wouldn't typically do as I happen to think a lot of the big man, I picked Morgan Kate up and asked her again. Santa replied, "Mom, just turn her around, sit her here and take the picture". I shot evil eyes his way and then proceeded to kneel with Morgan Kate at his feet. He attempted to grab her in which she whimpered and I held on tighter to her. Travis quickly snapped the picture and we were on our way. I may or may not have said as we were walking away, "That Santa is terrible".
Now, I am not sure if Santa was having a difficult night or wasn't feeling well or maybe he was irritated that we weren't paying the ridiculous price for a 5X7, but he was just downright rude and the total opposite definition of Santa. And if it was because of the whole money thing, then that is just pathetic. Thank goodness I didn't sit MK in his lap and thank goodness she seemed to be okay. I think had he been kinder and more gentle, we might have actually gotten her to sit in his lap. But with his attitude, she wasn't budging and we weren't making her.
In the future we will not be visiting that Santa.
I apologize for sounding angry or harsh, but I was really disappointed. I think a lot of Santa and even after thirty years I still hold to the "If you believe, you will receive" motto. Of course there are so many things I want Morgan Kate to know and learn about the holiday season that don't have anything to do with Santa, but I also would like to foster the kind of excitement and love I had and continue to have for the man in the big red suit.